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Nashville DUI/DWI Law Blog

The difference between a misdemeanor and a felony

If you have recently been charged with a crime in Texas, you may have questions about what the wording means. Slight differences in the terms used can have a major effect on the fines, jail time and other penalties that may be assigned to you. We at the Law Office of Rob McKinney can help you understand exactly what charges have been levied as well as represent your rights during your court case. 

According to Findlaw, if you have been charged with a felony, you are being accused of the most serious type of crime. Some of the most common crimes in the felony category include arson, burglary, rape, murder and kidnapping. If convicted, you will likely face more than one year behind bars in addition to any other fines or consequences you are given. The highest level of felony charges are punishable by the death penalty.

Smryna,TN. DUI Alert

Arrested for DUI in Smyrna,TN., your case will start in the Municipal court of Smyrna,TN. One unusal feature of DUI cases in Smyrna,TN. is the compliance hearing.

Common misconceptions about Miranda rights

Nearly everyone who has ever watched a crime show knows about Miranda rights. After a criminal apprehension, the arresting officer will say something like this:

"You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided for you. Do you understand what I have just said?"

How can a DUI in Tennessee impact you?

In Tennessee, being convicted of a DUI charge can end up costing you more than you expect. Rob McKinney, Nashville criminal and DUI defense attorney, is here to highlight the exact consequences for varying DUI charges and what you may face if you end up convicted.

It's important to understand that even first time offenders will get slapped with fines and penalties. It can't be less than $350, but there is no set upper limit. This might not seem like a lot to some, but for others, it can be a devastating blow to your finances and savings. The fees raise as the number of offenses do, ultimately capping out at a maximum charge of $15,000 if you have four or more offenses.

Is possession of half an ounce of pot always a felony?

In Tennessee, possession of one-half ounce to 10 pounds of marijuana is a Class E felony. If you are found guilty of this crime, you could be sentenced to 1-6 years in prison. But there is an interesting aspect to the law that defines this crime (Tennessee Code 39-17-417).

To gain a conviction, the state must not only prove you were in possession of a half ounce of pot, it must also show that you intended to "manufacture, deliver or sell" the stuff. In some cases, that can provide the defense with a viable strategy to obtain a not guilty verdict, dismissal, or plea agreement to a lesser charge.

What are the consequences of a drunk driving conviction?

If you are convicted of drunk driving in Tennessee, you face severe penalties. The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security states that if this is your first driving under the influence offense, the penalties include the following:

  • Jail sentence of from 48 hours to 11 months
  • Seven consecutive days minimum confinement if your blood alcohol concentration was 0.20 percent or above
  • Driver’s license revocation for one year
  • $350-$1,500 fine
  • Ignition Interlock Device installed on your vehicle at your expense
  • Restitution to anyone who suffered a personal loss or physical injury as a result of your drunk driving

If you have a second DUI conviction, you will spend a minimum of 29 days in jail; your fine will increase to as much as $3,500; your license will be revoked for two years; your vehicle will be subject to seizure or forfeiture; and you will be ordered to attend an alcohol and drug treatment program. The penalties for a third and fourth DUI conviction are even more severe. In addition, a fourth conviction is a Class E Felony rather than a misdemeanor. If any two of your convictions are within a five-year period, the IID will be required on your vehicle for six months after you get your driver’s license reinstated.

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